Portrait Miniature of Sarah Pierce
Attributed to George Catlin (1796-1872)
June 26, 1767
January 19, 1852
Sarah Pierce was born in Litchfield, Connecticut on June 26, 1767. She was the youngest of Mary Paterson Pierce and John Pierce’s seven children. Sarah’s mother died when she was only three years old. Her father remarried two years later and had three more children with his new wife. The Pierce children were frequently surrounded by highly educated individuals, as John Pierce was heavily involved in education. Sarah Pierce’s step-mother pushed all her children to pursue their education to the fullest extent. Sarah attended a dame school at the age of four or five, which led to her to admire many of her female teachers.
After the passing of her father in 1783, John Pierce Jr. was responsible for the family’s survival. With a step-mother and nine younger siblings, John needed assistance ...[more]
"Miss Pierce had a quiet relish for humor and fun that made her very lenient toward one who never was any special credit to her as a pupil. During the whole of my training under her care, 'with the exception of practicing on the piano, map-drawing, and a little painting, I did little else than play. There was a curious fashion among the girls of helping themselves by guessing, which I practiced so adroitly that, with a few snatches at my books, I slipped through my recitations as a 'tolerably decent scholar. Occasionally my kind teacher wondered how and when my lessons were learned, and complimented me as the 'busiest of all creatures in doing nothing.' Catharine Beecher, Autobiography, correspondence, etc., of Lyman Beecher, D.D
by Beecher, Lyman, 1775-1863, Publication date 1864 Accessed ...[more]
Pierce very frequently entertained Litchfield Law School students and supervised the social events. If displeased by a student's behavior, she would ban him from calling at the house. It was said that "to be denied admission to Miss Sally Pierce's parlor was the deepest disgrace which could befall a young man."
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